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INSIDE DHSPD: Former Officer Kept Drug Stash, Investigators Say

Former Desert Hot Springs Police Officer Matt Denney retired in 2004.

An internal police memo shows a locker inspection found unbooked evidence which jeopardized several drug cases according to Lieutentant Dave Henderson.

Anothermemo from Records Officer Nancy Allen shows Officer Denney tried to check in7 pieces of evidence on January 11, 2004, just days after the locker search.

Denney was investigated by internal affairs for something called double booking. Here’swhat the report found:

Denney confiscated one bag of methamphetamine on September 22, 2003. Aftertaking it from the streets, Denney files a booking report gives it case number03-3178. He then mails it off to the Department of Justice drug lab in Riverside.

But one year later, Lieutenant Henderson notices unbooked bags of drugs in the officer’s locker.

Denney tries to explain awaya second bag of methby booking it days after the locker search.

His mistake is in what he wrote on the second booking report. Denney uses the same booking number, 03-3178, forthat bag of meth booked on January 11th 2004that he used for the bag already sent off to the drug lab in Riverside. The first bag of meth was real evidence with a verifiable paper trail. The second bag has no verifyable paper trail and according to the internal affairs report belonged to Officer Denney.

The same goes for a9-millimeter handgun. Denney also booked it into evidence on January 11th, 2004. But the arrest of the gun-carrying suspect was on September 24, 2001. The Hi-Point Semi Automatic handgun had the serial number filed off. NewsChannel 3 is still investigating what Officer Denney was doing with an untracable handgun for three years.

Confidential informants at nearby Sky Valley dog fighting rings said their drugs were from “former busts in DHS. The good drugs never really got to the evidence room.”

Another confidential informant whose voice we’ve altered told investigators she saw Denney having sex with teenaged girls.

The investigator asked, “Do you have information about him having sex with underage females?”

“Yes,I do,” said the informant.

The investigator then asked, “Ok, who would that be?”

“I know two females. One aged 13 and another was 17,” explained the informant.

Matt Denney was allowed to retire instead of being charged. Taxpayers are still paying for his benefits.

Our attempts to contact Matt Denney for a response have so far been unsuccesful.

KESQ News Team

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